Suffice it to say that the Villafuertes of Camarines Sur are on top of the world right now following the May 9 elections.

From left to right: Camarines Sur 2nd district Rep. LRay Villafuerte, Governor Luigi Villafuerte, and 5th district Rep. Migz Villafuerte.

Family patriarch, Rep. LRay Villafuerte of Camarines Sur’s 2nd district will now be joined in the House of Representatives by his son, Miguel Luis or “Migz” Villafuerte, who was elected to the House seat in the 5th district.

Meanwhile, his other son Vincenzo Renato or “Luigi” Villafuerte succeeded Migz for governor of the province.

The two young Villafuertes triumphed over powerful political clans in the Camarines Sur. Migz toppled the Alfelors, represented by Iriga City Mayor Madelaine Alfelor-Gazmen; while Luigi, running for the first time for an elective post, beat in the gubernatorial contest Rolando Andaya Jr. who used to represent Camarines Sur’s 1st district.

Andaya had formerly served as House Majority Floor Leader and Department of Budget and Management (DBM) secretary. His sister—Maribel Andaya Eusebio—ran for representative of the 1st district, but lost to Hori Horibata of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

Migz and Luigi ran as candidates of PDP-Laban, President Duterte’s political party, while LRay ran under the banner of the National Unity Party (NUP), one of the current administration’s political allies.

The three Villafuertes all scored convincing victories in the May 9 polls and have since been proclaimed. Incidentally, they all led pre-election surveys.

The Andayas have long dominated the 1st district, starting with Rolando Andaya Sr. who became assemblyman of the Batasang Pambansa in 1984, and later as undersecretary of budget. The senior Andaya also served as chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations for 11 consecutive years, the longest on record, when he was congressman.

His son, Rolando Jr., had served as a three-term congressman and also chairman of the House appropriations panel.

Rolando Jr.’s sister, Maribel Eusebio, a former mayor of Pasig City, had attempted twice—but failed—to run as congresswoman, in the second district in 2019 and in the first district in 2022.

Rolando Jr.’s loss to neophyte Luigi, and Maribel Eusebio’s defeat at the hands of Horibata, also a neophyte, have ended that Andayas’ political reign in 1st district, according to political observers.

Iriga City Mayor Alfelor-Gazmen run against incumbent Governor Migz in the 5th district and lost via a huge margin.

Nonokoy Alfelor also lost to Vice Mayor Rex Oliva in the contest for mayor of Iriga City, which had been under the Alfelors’ rule for over 30 years. The Alfelors also ruled the 5th district for over two decades.

Incumbent Board Member Rupert Alfelor also failed to make it as board member in the 5th district.

Source: Manila Bulletin (